How to download & use the backup of the RARBG database

RARBG was one of the bigger torrent websites, but it shut down. Since it was such a clean and extensive library, I’m happy someone backed up the entire database of its magnet links. Here’s how download and browse it.

Disclaimer: Why use RARBG’s database?

Streaming services dominate the landscape for good reason:

  • (4K) blu-ray players are expensive and you can’t just move them around to any screen in your house
  • Laptops no longer have optical drives, let alone Blu-Ray…
  • Your smartphone or tablet can’t play BluRays… not even DVD’s
  • All those DVD’s you own, look terrible on a 4K OLED TV
  • Disks aren’t convenient or mobile, and prone to damage and scratches.

So it makes sense to convert your media library to perfectly compressed h.265 (HDR) rips. But that’s technically very challenging and requires a lot of knowledge and computational power (thus energy). So it’s not inconceivable to just look for a good rip of a disk you already own.

Also, the database of RARBG was ‘Yuge’. It contains movies you will not find anywhere else. You can give it a shot if you can’t find a legal way to obtain or stream an obscure movie. If they still have ‘seeds’, of course…

Most importantly: In most countries, downloading a movie -if you own the copy- is tolerated but still borderline legal.
The illegal part is usually uploading (or seeding parts of) said movie to other users, which is near-impossible to avoid while torrenting. So keep that in mind.

Download & browse the RARBG magnet link database

Assuming you know how to use magnet links:

  1. Download the rarbg_db.sqlite database with this magnet link: magnet:?xt=urn:btih:ulfihylx35oldftn7qosmk6hkhsjq5af
  2. Download a free database browser like SqliteBrowser (Mac / PC), and run “DB Browser for SQLite.exe” (or the mac equivalent)
    • Drag the rarbg_db.sqlite file into the program (or File -> Open Database)
    • Now that the database is opened, go to the tab “Browse Data”
    • To display the magnet links, right click the header of the “hash” column and click “edit display format“.
      Remove "hash" and paste this in stead:
      printf("magnet:?xt=urn:btih:%s", "hash")

    • Press “ok” and now you can copy the magnet links.

A few tips to browse the RARBG database:

  1. Use the IMDB column with the exact Title ID for a quick and easy match
  2. In the “cat” column, right-click a certain category (e.g. movies_x265 ) and select “use as exact filter” or “use as filter expression -> Containing”,
  3. In the title column you could filter on “1080p” or “dts” or whatever you need.

You get the idea, you can get as creative as you need to be.

The database lives on.

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